At the beginning of the 1980s, Marden adopted a fluid and expressive style that was influenced by Eastern mysticism and calligraphy. He painted loose serpentine curves and made marks resembling hieroglyphs, that he joined into vertical columns. The resulting webs evoke crystal structures or a mesh of roots and branches. Marden's paintings are often the result of a studied contemplation of nature: 'You are observing nature and yet you are just trying to respond to it. When you draw a tree you get a certain kind of energy¿ just by drawing the way it grows.'